The UAE-UK Business Council was set up in 2009.  It is a small, high-level body co-chaired by His Excellency Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh and Sir Edward Lister.  It met for the first time in September 2011 in Abu Dhabi and has met twice a year ever since, alternating between the UAE and the UK.

The next meeting of the Business Council will take place in December 2020.


In 2009 bilateral trade stood at £7.5 billion.  The original objective for the Business Council was to boost bilateral trade to £12 billion by 2015.  This was achieved by 2014.

At its 8th meeting in May 2015, the Business Council accepted the challenge laid down by the then Prime Minister of the United Kingdom in correspondence with his Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, for a new bilateral trade target of £25 billion.

At the end of 2019, bilateral trade stood at £18.4 billion (provisional figures).

About Us-Council Meeting

Council Meeting. 


Membership of the Business Council is by invitation only and is focused at CEO or Executive Board equivalent level.


The role of the Business Council is to:

  • Identify and recommend actions progressively to remove impediments to greater trade, investment and commercial links between the two countries;
  • Act as a catalyst for greater interest and linkages between the two countries’ commercial sectors from small and medium sized enterprises to multinationals;
  • Propose innovative areas of collaboration that would benefit both countries economically and commercially and could deepen the bilateral relationship and strengthen the partnership internationally;
  • Provide strategic advice to the two Governments as appropriate.



The UAE-UK Business Council is a not-for-profit Company Limited By Guarantee, incorporated in the UK as “UUBC Ltd”.

The Company registration number is: 12812165